Sunday, November 21, 2010

Blind Justice: Justice (R) Malik Mohammad Qayyum, Senator Saifur Rehman & Judiciary.

LAHORE: Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif was annoyed over delay in the Lahore High Court’s decision in President Asif Ali Zardari’s case during his tenure, according to a transcript of conversation between Justice (r) Abdul Qayyum and National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) former chairman Saifur Rehman, aired on a private news channel. The audiotape was provided by Senator Faisal Raza Abdi. The channel also aired a conversation between Pervez Elahi, Shahbaz and Justice Qayyum. Following is the transcript of the conversation. Justice (r) Abdul Qayyum: Your task will be done in a day or two. I had to request an adviser (Peerzada) for you. I told him that I am very ill and I have to leave abroad and I have asked him to end up the matter for my sake. Peerzada has told me that he will do it and it will be done. He told me that he would compensate for all the mistakes I have, adding that Mian Sahib (Nawaz Sharif) would be happy as well. REFERENCE: Audiotape reveals Sharifs manipulated verdict in Zardari’s case Daily Times Monitor Sunday, November 21, 2010\11\21\story_21-11-2010_pg7_21


ISLAMABAD, Feb 4: The guilty verdict handed down to Benazir Bhutto and her husband by the Lahore High Court in 1999 in the SGS/Cotecna reference case was rendered highly suspect by startling disclosures made in a report published by a respected British newspaper on Sunday. Benazir's appeal against the verdict sentencing her to imprisonment for five years and nearly $10 million fine is coming up for hearing in the Supreme Court on Feb 26, 2001. Justice Malik Qayyum of Lahore High Court had allegedly announced a pre-written judgment in the case, the Sunday Times story revealed quoting tape recorded conversations between the judge and the former Law Minister, Khalid Anwer, the former chief of Accountability Bureau, Saifur Rehman and the former Chief Justice of Lahore High Court, Justice Rashid Aziz. The newspaper story has claimed that it had obtained the copy of a letter along with the tapes sent by an officer of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) to the President of Pakistan on Jan 29, 2001. The newspaper said that on being approached Justice Qayyum said he could not remember the conversations recorded by the IB. "I don't recall any such calls," he said. "I don't know anything about it."

A sitting Judge i.e. Malik Muhammad Qayyum [2nd Government of Nawaz Sharif] discussing the "Sentence and Punishment" against Zardari and Benazir Bhutto with Senator Saif ur Rehman [video and transcript]

Sawal Yeh hai 19th November 2010 1/4


Abdur Rahim, a deputy director in the IB, who said he was told to monitor the office, home and mobile phones of Justice Qayyum at the very start of the Cotecna case, has explained, according to Sunday Times story, that following a crisis of conscience, he had decided to send an affidavit and hour-long tape to the President, with copies to Gen Pervez Musharraf, the chief justice and others. The bugging allegedly disclosed that the former prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, was intent on securing Benazir Bhutto's conviction at any cost. Rahim is quoted to have said in his letter to the President that during the process he was astonished that the judge was being dictated to obtain a judgment of their choice against Benazir Bhutto and Asif Zardari by Khalid Anwer, Saifur Rehman and Justice Rashid Aziz. All the three men, Rahim alleged, were acting on the orders of Nawaz Sharif and the tapes allegedly showed that the judge was threatened with removal if he did not agree to conclude the trial quickly. According to Sunday Times Rahim was presently outside Pakistan and has appealed to the President for protection, saying he feared for his life and for his family. The tape transcript reproduced by the newspaper shows that Justice Qayyum even asked Saifur Rehman for advice on the sentence. "Now you tell me how much punishment do you want me to give her?" REFERENCE: UK paper's report on Benazir's conviction M Ziauddin DAWN WIRE SERVICE Week Ending: 10 February 2001 Issue:07/06

A sitting Judge i.e. Malik Muhammad Qayyum [2nd Government of Nawaz Sharif] discussing the "Sentence and Punishment" against Zardari and Benazir Bhutto with Senator Saif ur Rehman [video and transcript]

Sawal Yeh hai 19th November 2010 2/4


WHAT the publication of the Hamoodur Rahman Report did for the army, the Justice Qayyum tapes as revealed by the Sunday Times have done for the higher judiciary. We had a fair suspicion of what the Eastern Command did in 1971 but the message was really brought home by the details in the Hamood Report. So too with the judiciary. We all knew such things went on. But for the cameras to catch a revealing episode: this is the value of the Qayyum tapes. The light they cast throws in sharp relief the judiciary's feet of clay. Are the tapes genuine or doctored? There shouldn't be any doubts on this score because authenticity is writ large over them down to His Lordship Justice Malik Qayyum addressing Khalid Anwer, Nawaz Sharif's then lord chancellor, as "sir" and declaring himself to be his servant (khadim). Read the lines carefully. The tone and inflection are genuinely Pakistani. No one, not even a Booker Prize author, could have invented them. Need we be surprised by the audacity of the interference and the readiness of Justice Qayyum to oblige his interlocutors? Not really. Prolonged authoritarianism has taken its toll, even on judges sworn to uphold the cause of truth and justice. After all who appoints judges? The executive, acting in all cases through the law minister. Security of tenure (as in established democracies) encourages independence. Insecurity breeds pliant and sycophantic behaviour. It's nothing more complicated than this.

When Zia promulgated his Provisional Constitution Order in March 1981 some judges were asked to take the oath while others were dropped. The same happened with Gen Musharraf's PCO in 2000. A few judges were again quietly dropped. Civilian rulers have treated the judiciary no better, each one of them seeking pliant judges. Judges too have demeaned themselves by seeking small favours. Such a state of affairs hardly encourages independent behaviour. As for high court judges, the years have dealt more harshly with them. Although still attended with outward pomp, it does not stretch belief to imagine them sirring the lord chancellor of the day. For far too long has the judiciary sought refuge behind a narrow interpretation of the law of contempt. But the old barriers have broken down. Just as repeated military interventions have demystified the military, repeated invocations of the doctrine of necessity have damaged the judiciary. The ISI no longer commands the awe it once did. A similar fate has befallen the other holy cows whose shadow once fell on the county.

A sitting Judge i.e. Malik Muhammad Qayyum [2nd Government of Nawaz Sharif] discussing the "Sentence and Punishment" against Zardari and Benazir Bhutto with Senator Saif ur Rehman [video and transcript]

Sawal Yeh hai 19th November 2010 3/4


With regard to Justice Qayyum, moreover, these subtle considerations in any event do not apply. In the sacred precincts of the Lahore High Court he has enjoyed a special standing because of his identification with the personal problems of the Sharif dynasty. Anything affecting the family's interests has come to him for adjudication, almost as if he alone possessed the requisite delicacy to handle these matters. The division of the family's assets between its contending factions, cases involving the family's huge bank loans, and even the banking loans of Nawaz Sharif's principal errand boy, Saifur Rehman, were all attracted, as if by a powerful magnet, to Justice Qayyum's court and no other. This no doubt was the preferred style of the Sharifs, not only fashioning a personalized administration, with loyalists at key positions, but also arranging for a personalized form of justice. When their name was involved in the cooperatives' scandal of 1991, the Supreme Court judge selected to hold a judicial inquiry into the affair was Justice Lone who exonerated the Sharifs of any wrongdoing. Later, during Nawaz Sharif's second stint as prime minister, Lone became a PML senator.

A sitting Judge i.e. Malik Muhammad Qayyum [2nd Government of Nawaz Sharif] discussing the "Sentence and Punishment" against Zardari and Benazir Bhutto with Senator Saif ur Rehman [video and transcript]

Sawal Yeh hai 19th November 2010 4/4


Justice Qayyum (whose brother, incidentally, was a PML MNA) is a throwback to those interesting times. Small wonder if it was he who was chosen to be Benazir Bhutto's and Asif Zardari's principal nemesis. All the important cases against them were heard by him. To Justice Qayyum also belongs the triumph of reducing Benazir Bhutto to tears in open court, so zealous was he in the pursuit of justice. All this forms the backdrop to the tapes revealed by the Sunday Times. Justice Qayyum had been hand-picked to hear the cases against Benazir Bhutto because, as the contents of the tapes make clear, he was considered a loyalist who could be counted upon to do what was expected of him. And yet Nawaz Sharif not only kept the pressure on Justice Qayyum through Khalid Anwer and Saifur Rehman. He also ordered all of Justice Qayyum's telephones to be bugged, probably just to make sure that his zeal did not flag.

In this saga the then chief justice of the Lahore High Court, Justice Rashid Aziz, also makes a cameo appearance. He too carried word from the prime minister that the axe should fall swiftly on Benazir. What did Nawaz Sharif want? He had everything going for him. Benazir was no threat and wanted merely to be left alone. Why this obsession with vengeance? Benazir and Asif were no angels (we can say that again) but in having them prosecuted Nawaz Sharif was not seeking justice. He was pursuing a vendetta (just as Benazir was pursuing a vendetta when she had the Sharifs in the dock). None of the above, however, is surprising: not the fact that Justice Qayyum listened to Khalid Anwer and called him sir; not the fact that Saifur Rehman was acting as the prime minister's errand boy, after all this being one of his duties; not even Chief Justice Rashid Aziz's brief appearance. By Pakistani standards all this is fairly tame stuff. What I find surprising, although hardly distressing, is to see Khalid Anwer, erudition and all, to be performing the role of prime ministerial pressure-boy. Why did he have to do it? Hanging on to office (and worthless office at that) when Nawaz Sharif was having the 13th and 14th amendments raced through a pliant Parliament was bad enough. But holding a clock to Justice Qayyum's head and urging him, at the prime minister's bidding, to dispense justice fast is a reflection less on the hapless Justice Qayyum than on the learned Khalid Anwer.

Peter Mandelson is out of office in the UK on the basis of what to Pakistani ears would sound a quibble. Over here Khalid Anwer, who can quote Cicero and I daresay Demosthenes, is engaged in something far more serious and when caught out, takes refuge behind a lapse of memory. He does not remember having had such a conversation. Then goes on to say that even if such a conversation took place all he is alleged to have said is that the case should be disposed off quickly, which suggestion on his part was strictly in accordance with the requirements of the law. It is hard to say which is worse: the original sin or this prevarication? Anyhow, there is nothing in this whole affair which would really startle anyone even remotely familiar with the nexus between the judiciary and the founts of executive authority in Pakistan. The Nusrat Bhutto case which enshrined once again the doctrine of necessity; the hanging of Bhutto; the various judicial decisions validating Benazir Bhutto's dismissals from power; the one decision invalidating Nawaz Sharif's dismissal from power; the judges' revolt against Chief Justice Sajjad Ali Shah; the Supreme Court's inability to give any clear-cut verdict in the Supreme Court storming case (in which PML storm-troopers were involved); and the readiness of judges to abide by various provisional constitutional orders: these events do not constitute the judiciary's finest moments.

None of this makes the judiciary any worse than other institutions. It only goes to show that in the Turkish bath of Pakistani politics everyone is naked, including, let me say for the record, the press which too often has taken a self-serving view of where its true duty lies. In this humid arena there are no heroes, nor even any outstanding villains, great villainy requiring some qualities of head or heart. Read the transcripts of these conversations again and what comes across most strikingly is the mediocrity on display. Despotism being put to what uses? So much effort being expended to what end? REFERENCE: In this hammaam who is covered? Ayaz Amir DAWN WIRE SERVICE Week Ending: 10 February 2001 Issue : 07/06

IN a country that has witnessed so many political, financial and judicial scandals over the years, we ought to have become fairly shockproof by now. But as the recently published transcripts of the taped conversations between Justice Qayyum, ex-Law Minister Khalid Anwar and Nawaz Sharif's chief enforcer Saifur Rehman showed, there are some depths of depravity we had still not explored. The pressure applied by various powerful figures in Nawaz Sharif's government on the judge in the corruption case against Benazir Bhutto and her spouse is scarcely believable. In most countries, resignations would have been tendered, warrants of arrest issued and suo motu notice taken by the Supreme Court. Here, hardened as we are to the sight of the higher judiciary constantly bending to the will of the executive, all we are likely to see are a few editorials and articles plus a couple of weak denials by the actors in this new drama, and we will then sit back and wait for the next episode.

In his evasive defence, Khalid Anwer, once respected as an upright constitutional lawyer, said: "...I am alleged merely to have asked that the case be decided expeditiously in accordance with the provisions of the law." In the transcript, however, there is more than a hint of steel in the ex-law minister's words: "...But the gentleman [Nawaz Sharif] is very unhappy, because of the situation. There was discussion regarding this issue and I was wondering that a problem might arise. Now I am thinking if you could reach the final result within the outside limit of two weeks..."

In his letter to the president (said not to be received in the Presidency, but reproduced in The Sunday Times), Abdul Malik, the deputy director of the Intelligence Bureau, who had been given the task of bugging the High Court judge, has quoted from his tapes, and alleged that Justice Qayyum had discussed the sentence to be passed and confirmed that the judgment had been written before the defence had even concluded its arguments. Most Pakistanis would be ready to believe that this is not the first instance of blatant interference by the executive to obtain favourable judgments. However, reading the alleged words of those then in power reminds us yet again how precious a thing judicial independence is, and how its absence has shaped our tortured political history. Predictably, there have been proforma denials of varying degrees of conviction from Justice Qayyum and Khalid Anwar. Both claim to have no memory of any such conversations. However, the genuineness of the tapes can be easily established: everybody's voice has a specific and unique audio signature, and it would be a simple matter to compare the voice prints of the principal actors with the tapes made by the IB. Although tapes on their own are not normally accepted as evidence in our judicial system, the Supreme Court could order such a comparison given the magnitude of the can of worms opened under its nose.

Khalid Anwar has sought to cast doubt on the IB deputy director's motives by saying that if he had the tapes for two years, why has he chosen to release the tapes to the media now, merely three weeks before the Supreme Court is due to take up Benazir Bhutto's appeal against Justice Qayyum's judgment? She and Asif Zardari had been awarded seven-year jail terms each plus a huge monetary fine, including confiscation of their property in Pakistan. In his letter to the president, Abdul Malik has claimed that his conscience was shaken by the events he has described. Unfortunately, we have become too cynical to accept a "crisis of conscience" as a reason to stick one's neck out over anything. And the timing of this bombshell is too close to the hearing of the appeal to be entirely coincidental. In the murky world of Pakistani politics, we have to stir the muck below the surface in an attempt to get at the truth. Apparently, Malik and his family are currently abroad to escape official or political reprisals. Now flying off and living abroad takes a fair amount of money, and a deputy director in the IB is by no means well off.

One possibility is that the PPP discovered the existence of these tapes, and persuaded Malik to transcribe them and leak them to the press. In this scenario, he would have been promised a comfortable exile until the party returned to power and rewarded him suitably. However, knowing the PPP's unerring instinct to trip over its own feet, one feels the whole thing is too complex and subtle for the party's capability; indeed, it has all the hallmarks of an intelligence operation. Just supposing that with Nawaz Sharif out of the way and elections due next year, it had been decided at the highest level to do a deal with Benazir Bhutto to enable her to return to power. The first step needed would be to rehabilitate the ex-PM, and lift the ban restraining her from holding public office for ten years imposed by Justice Qayyum. This could be done by giving Benazir Bhutto's appeal before the Supreme Court greater substance. If the tapes are found to be genuine - and the Sunday Times would have been unlikely to print the transcripts if they had any doubts on this score - then a verdict of mistrial could well be the outcome.

Whatever the truth, Benazir Bhutto's claim to be a victim of a vindictive Nawaz Sharif and a pliant judiciary has been vindicated. Most of her supporters are hardly likely to make the distinction between the accuracy of evidence provided before the court and the judge's rush to pass a verdict under pressure. In the case in question, a wealth of documentary evidence, duly certified by a Swiss judge, was produced by the prosecution to link Benazir Bhutto and her spouse to kickbacks paid by the Swiss inspection company Cotecna. Had Nawaz Sharif not been in such a hurry to get a conviction, chances are that the judge would have reached the same verdict. As it is, the sudden appearance of the tapes has cast a doubt on the entire trial. Basically, Sharif's impatience with procedures and due process has proved to be a boon to his rival.

This can only be good news for Benazir Bhutto and her party. Suddenly, she has been rehabilitated in her supporters' eyes. Even non-partisan Pakistanis are beginning to doubt the validity of the charges against her. The biggest loser is the judiciary as public confidence in this crucial institution - never very high - has now hit rock-bottom. All eyes will now be fixed on the Supreme Court when it begins to consider Ms Bhutto's appeal later this month. REFERENCE: Rush to judgment Irfan Husain DAWN WIRE SERVICE Week Ending:10 February 2001 Issue : 07/06







Former Chief Justice Supreme Court of Pakistan, Syed Sajjad Ali Shah narrating details as to how Mian Nawaz Sharif and PML - N had attacked the Supreme Court of Pakistan in 1997.

Nawaz Sharif (PML - N) Attacked Supreme Court 1

Nawaz Sharif (PML - N) Attacked Supreme Court 2

Nawaz Sharif (PML - N) Attacked Supreme Court 3

Nawaz Sharif (PML - N) Attacked Supreme Court 4

Nawaz Sharif (PML - N) Attacked Supreme Court 5

BBC Documentary on Nawaz Sharif (PML - N) Corruption

ISLAMABAD, March 18: Jamaat-i-Islami chief Qazi Hussain Ahmed has revealed that Osama bin Laden had offered to buy loyalties of legislators to see Mian Nawaz Sharif as prime minister. In an interview appearing in the magazine of an Urdu newspaper on Sunday, Qazi Hussain Ahmed said that Osama had visited the JI headquarters Mansoora and wanted to strike an agreement with the Jamaat but the suggestion was declined by him. Excerpts of the interview were published by the newspaper on Saturday. Qazi said he had met Osama several times in the past.However, the JI on Saturday clarified that meetings between the JI amir and Osama in Peshawar and Lahore were held in days when the Al Qaeda leader was staying in Peshawar. Recalling political events that took place when Mr Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League and JI were components of the then Islami Jamhoori Ittehad, Qazi said Osama was a big supporter of IJI and Nawaz Sharif and wanted to see him Pakistan’s prime minister.

Nawaz Sharif Osama Bin Laden Khalid Khwaja Connections 1

Nawaz Sharif Osama Bin Laden Khalid Khwaja Connections 2

Nawaz Sharif Osama Bin Laden Khalid Khwaja Connections 3

“Bin Laden was prepared to pay for buying parliamentarians’ votes to achieve this objective,” said Qazi Hussain Ahmed, who also heads the Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal. He said a delegation sent by Osama had visited him in Peshawar and conveyed that they wanted cooperation from JI but “we declined the request”. In a statement issued on Saturday, a JI spokesman said that excerpts from interview were published in the daily and presented on a private TV channel in such a manner that they were creating confusion in the minds of people.— PPI. REFERENCE: Osama offered to buy votes for Nawaz: Qazi March 19, 2006 Sunday Safar 18, 1427

I read this headline on, THE NEWS website, Tension between Zardari, Shahbaz mounts over jailed chief editor of The Frontier Post''. This makes no sense that Rehmat Shah Afridi is still in prison, I was expecting from ANP Govt in pukhtoonistan to react on this issue but I don't understand muteness of ANP leadership, although on ANP web site I did send a message to Chief Minister, I would like to ask all the writers on this forum to send messages to CM on the following website of ANP( express your solidarity with The Frontier Post Chief Mr. Afridi who is in prison because he was punished for expressing his views and he was educating Pakhtuns through his newspaper. His confinement is politically motivated. The drugs were planted on vehicle he was in. Similar to innumerable judicial murders and crimes to suffocate voice of Pathans. The literate class of people in Pakistan is the only hope, which can place a check & balance on these bureaucrats corrupt politicians. Its about time this class should pick their pens. Its really amazing that criminals and thugs involved in suicide attacks can be easily released in Pakistan but someone like Mr. Afridi stays in prison. Two face Nawaz Sharif and his brother who are responsible for declaring Pakistan a failed state ran out of country but did not have courage and principles to face jail, attacked Supreme Court and insulted judges but now wants to be champions of judiciary and free press.

Rehmat Shah Afridi [Frontier Posts] Exposes Nawaz Sharif (PML-N)'s Corruption 1

Rehmat Shah Afridi [Frontier Posts] Exposes Nawaz Sharif (PML-N)'s Corruption 2

I agree with Mr. Asif Ali Zardari who bitterly asked: "Where are the champions of the press freedom today? Rehmat Shah Afridi was arrested and booked in a fake drug smuggling case on political grounds. He spent nine years in jail just for writing the truth and now he is seriously ill but some people still want to take their revenge. "Champions of the press freedom should be ashamed of themselves that for nine years some one in their ranks is in prison but they are not saying a word. Rehmat Shah Afridi was punished because he disclosed that Nawaz Sharif received Rs. 150 crore from Osama bin Ladin in the Green Palace Hotel, Madina, with the pledge that the amount would be used for furthering the cause of Jihad in Afghanistan and helping the Mujahideen and exposing the deeds of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif. Instead he (Nawaz) put the whole amount in his pocket. Nawaz Sharif got annoyed with Afridi when he was chief minister of Punjab in 1986.Frontier Post Chief disclosed in his newspaper that Nawaze sold the commercial land between UCH and Kalma Chowk in Lahore to his relatives for meager Rs. 400 per marla.

Rehmat Shah Afridi [Frontier Posts] Exposes Nawaz Sharif (PML-N)'s Corruption 3

Rehmat Shah Afridi [Frontier Posts] Exposes Nawaz Sharif (PML-N)'s Corruption 4

After that, he distributed plots in NWFP, Punjab and Balochistan among his colleagues and opponents to get their political support. He published all this in his newspaper along with proofs, which further infuriated Nawaz Sharif. Rehmat Shah Afridi used his personal links to thwart the "no-confidence motion" against Benazir Bhutto in 1990 and asked the members of National Assembly from Punjab, FATA and NWFP to use their vote in favour of Benazir Bhutto. Mr. Afridi did so as it was in the interest of the country at that time. Nawaz Sharif once threatened him that they would rule the country for 20 years and that he (Rehmat Shah) could not harm him through publishing news items against them. This proves all cases against The Frontier Post chief were false and baseless. Detention of Rehmat Shah Afridi is no more justified. Rehmat Shah Afridi had been arrested in a fake and bogus case because the then government was not happy with his bold editorial policy. The PPP government's pro-media and democratic credentials have already been enhanced by the proposed anti-PEMRA bill in parliament. It should now do the honourable and just thing by ordering the immediate release of Rehmat Shah Afridi and winning hearts and minds all round. REFERENCE: Prisoner of conscience M Waqar New York Thursday, May 22, 2008, Jamad-i-Awal 14, 1429 A.H. ASLO READ: REFERENCE: Rehmat Shah Afridi’s case unique in country’s legal history By Abid Butt Friday, June 04, 2004

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